Diovan HCT (valsartan and hydrochlorothiazide)

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Brand Name

Diovan HCT {Novartis}

Generic Name

Valsartan and Hydrochlorothiazide, pronounced val-SAR-tan/HYE-droe-KLOR-oh-THYE-a-zide

Valsartan HCTZ (Valsartan, Hydrochlorothiazide)

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Disclaimer

The information contained in this drug guide is intended as an educational resource only. This guide is not exhaustive and does not contain all available information about this drug.This guide is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatment.

The information provided in this guide does not replace the need for the advice and services of medical professionals or the need for medical examination. Always talk to your physician or pharmacist before taking any prescription medication or over the counter drugs (including any supplements) or before making any changes to your treatment. Only your doctor, nurse or pharmacist can provide you with safe and effective advice regarding your drug treatment.

The use of the information in this guide is at your sole risk. This information is provided "AS IS" with no warranties to accuracy or timeliness.

**All trademarks and registered trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

 

What is Diovan HCT?

Diovan HCT is a medication to treat hypertension, or high blood pressure. The “HCT” stands for Hydrochlorothiazide, which acts as a diuretic, or “water pill”. Some patients need this dual combination of medications to effectively lower their blood pressure. Diovan helps your blood pressure by relaxing your blood vessels, and Hydrochlorothiazide helps your kidneys to eliminate excess sodium and fluid which may contribute to your high blood pressure. Diovan HCT may also be used for purposes not described in this medication guide.

 

Key Facts About Diovan HCT

Diovan HCT is an angiotensin II receptor antagonist, which means that it helps your blood vessels from narrowing, which lowers your blood pressure and improves your blood flow. Hydrochlorothiazide is a thiazide diuretic, also known as a water pill, that helps prevent your body from absorbing too much salt, which can cause fluid retention. HCT also helps you to eliminate excess salt and fluid through your kidneys.

Diovan HCT is in FDA pregnancy category D. You should not use Diovan HCT if you are pregnant. If you become pregnant while taking Diovan HCT you should stop taking this medication and contact your doctor right away. Diovan HCT may cause injury or death to an unborn baby if taken during your second or third trimester. You should be sure to use effective birth control while taking Diovan HCT.

While you are taking Diovan HCT you should not drink alcohol. Because drinking alcohol can further lower your blood pressure you may experience an increase in certain side effects of Diovan HCT if you drink while taking it.

Unless your doctor has advised you to do so, you should not use potassium supplements or salt substitutes while you are taking Diovan HCT.

Continue to use Diovan HCT as your doctor has directed, and be sure to get your blood pressure checked regularly.

You should be aware that in rare cases Diovan HCT may cause a condition which results in the breakdown of skeletal muscle tissue, which can lead to subsequent kidney failure. Tell your doctor immediately you have unexplained muscle tenderness, pain or weakness, particularly if you also have exhaustion, a fever and dark colored urine.

While you are taking Diovan HCT you should try and avoid becoming overheated or dehydrated, especially in hot weather or when you are exercising. Your doctor can give you instructions about what type of liquids you should be drinking when you are exercising, as well as how much you should be drinking. In some cases, drinking too much liquid may be as unsafe as not drinking enough.

 

Before You Take Diovan HCT

If you are allergic to Valsartan or hydrochlorothiazide you should not take Diovan HCT.

If you are allergic to sulfa drugs or penicillin you should not take Diovan HCT.

If you are pregnant, think you may be pregnant, or are breastfeeding you should not take Diovan HCT.

You should inform your doctor if you have liver disease, kidney disease, congestive heart failure or heart disease before taking Diovan HCT.

If you suffer from low or high blood levels of potassium, gout, lupus or diabetes you should tell your doctor before you start treatment with Diovan HCT.

Let your doctor know if you drink 2 or more alcoholic beverages daily. Alcohol can increase the risk of serious side effects if you are taking Diovan HCT

Tell your doctor if you have glaucoma before taking Diovan HCT.

Until you know how you will react to Diovan HCT you should avoid getting up too fast from a lying or sitting position, as you may experience dizziness. Be sure to get up slowly and steady yourself to prevent a fall, especially when you first begin your treatment with Diovan HCT.

You need to be aware that certain conditions can cause low blood pressure, and make the effects of Diovan HCT more pronounced for you. Tell your doctor right away if you experience diarrhea, heart disease, intense sweating, vomiting, dialysis, or if you are on a low salt diet or taking diuretics (water pills).

If you are elderly you should use caution while taking Diovan HCT, as you may be more sensitive to its effects.

 

Diovan HCT Drug Interactions

You should inform your doctor if you are taking any of the following:

  • aspirin
  • barbiturates like amobarbital (Amytal), butabarbital (Butisol), mephobarbital (Mebaral), secobarbital (Seconal), and phenobarbital (Luminal, Solfoton)
  • blood pressure medications other thanDiovan HCT
  • celecoxib (Celebrex)
  • cholestyramine (Prevalite, Questran) or colestipol (Colestid)
  • cyclosporine (Gengraf, Neoral, Sandimmune)
  • diclofenac (Arthrotec, Cambia, Cataflam, Voltaren, Flector Patch, Pennsaid, Solareze)
  • diuretics like amiloride (Midamor), bumetanide (Bumex), chlorthalidone (Hygroton, Thalitone), ethacrynic acid (Edecrin), furosemide (Lasix), hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ, HydroDiuril), indapamide (Lozol), metolazone (Mykrox, Zarxolyn), spironolactone (Aldactone), triamterene (Dyrenium, Maxzide, Dyazide), and torsemide (Demadex).
  • ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin)
  • indomethacin (Indocin), meloxicam (Mobic)
  • insulin or diabetes medications
  • lithium (Eskalith, Lithobid)
  • muscle relaxers like baclofen (Lioresal), carisoprodol (Soma), cyclobenzaprine (Flexeril), dantrolene (Dantrium), metaxalone (Skelaxin), or methocarbamol (Robaxin), orphenadrine (Norflex), and tizanidine (Zanaflex)
  • narcotic pain medications like hydrocodone (Lortab, Vicodin), hydromorphone (Dilaudid, Palladone), levorphanol (Levo-Dromoran), meperidine (Demerol), methadone (Methadose), morphine (Kadian, MS Contin), oxycodone (OxyContin), oxymorphone (Numorphan), and propoxyphene (Darvon, Darvocet).
  • rifampin (Rifadin, Rimactane, Rifater)
  • ritonavir (Norvir, Kaletra)
  • steroids (prednisone)

Other drugs you take that are not listed may interact with Diovan HCT. You should tell your doctor about all of the medications you use. This includes prescription drugs, vitamins, supplements and herbal products, and over the counter medications. You should not begin taking a new medication without telling your doctor first.

 

Directions for Taking Diovan HCT

You should take Diovan HCT exactly how your doctor has told you to. It is important that you do not take Diovan HCT in larger or smaller amounts, or for longer or shorter than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label and follow any dose changes carefully if your doctor instructs you to change your dose.

Diovan HCT should be taken at the same time every day.

Diovan HCT can be taken with or without food.

It may take between 2 and 4 weeks of treatment with Diovan HCT for your blood pressure to become under control. It is important that you continue using Diovan HCT as your doctor has directed you to. Tell your doctor if your symptoms do not improve after 4 weeks of treatment.

You may need to take Diovan HCT on a long-term basis for the treatment of high blood pressure. It is important that you follow up with your doctor on a regular basis to be sure that Diovan HCT is helping your condition and not causing you to have any adverse or harmful effects.

Diovan HCT may interfere with certain lab tests, including the parathyroid function test. Let your doctor know that you are taking Diovan HCT before taking any lab tests.

Diovan HCT should be stored at room temperature, and away from both moisture and heat.

If you miss a dose of Diovan HCT you should attempt to take the missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose, or if your next dose is less than 12 hours away you should skip the dose you missed.

 

Diovan HCT Side Effects

If you experience any of the following adverse effects you should stop taking Diovan HCT and seek emergency medical help immediately.

  • difficulty breathing
  • eye pain or vision problems
  • feeling faint
  • fast heart rate or pounding heart
  • fever
  • hives
  • jaundice
  • muscle pain or weakness
  • rapid weight gain from swelling
  • swelling, especially of your face, lips, throat or tongue
  • urinary abnormalities, such as urinating less often or not at all, increased urinating, or extremely dark colored urine.

Less serious side effects of Diovan HCT may include:

  • back pain
  • blurred vision
  • cold symptoms, such as a stuffy nose or sore throat
  • diarrhea
  • dizziness
  • dry cough
  • exhaustion
  • itching or rash
  • mild muscle or joint pain
  • mild stomach pain

It should be noted that this is not a complete list of possible side effects of Diovan HCT. You should contact your physician for a complete list and medical advice regarding these effects.

 

Diovan HCT Description and Dosing

Diovan HCT is available as tablets for oral administration in the following dosage forms and strengths of valsartan/HCTZ:

80mg/12.5mg, imprinted with CG/HGH

160mg/12.5mg, imprinted with CG/HHH

160mg/25mg, imprinted with NVR/HXH

320mg/12.5mg, imprinted with NVR/HIL

320mg/25mg, imprinted with NVR/CTI

The typical starting dose is for adult patients with hypertension, or high blood pressure is Diovan HCT 160mg/12.5mg, taken once daily. The dosage may be increased after 1 to 2 weeks of therapy to a maximum of one 320mg/25mg tablet once daily if needed. Your doctor will determine the right dose of Diovan HCT for you.

All people taking Diovan HCT should consult their doctor for specific dosing pertaining to them. Do not attempt to alter or change your dose without your physician’s consent.

If you suspect that you have overdosed with Diovan HCT you should seek emergency help immediately.

 

Ingredients in Diovan HCT

Diovan HCT contains valsartan and hydrochlorothiazide as the active ingredients. Other ingredients include colloidal silicon dioxide, crospovidone, hydroxypropyl, methylcellulose, iron oxides, magnesium stearate, microcrystalline cellulose, polyethylene, glycol, talc, and titanium dioxide.

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Disclaimer

The information contained in this drug guide is intended as an educational resource only. This guide is not exhaustive and does not contain all available information about this drug.This guide is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatment.

The information provided in this guide does not replace the need for the advice and services of medical professionals or the need for medical examination. Always talk to your physician or pharmacist before taking any prescription medication or over the counter drugs (including any supplements) or before making any changes to your treatment. Only your doctor, nurse or pharmacist can provide you with safe and effective advice regarding your drug treatment.

The use of the information in this guide is at your sole risk. This information is provided "AS IS" with no warranties to accuracy or timeliness.

**All trademarks and registered trademarks are the property of their respective owners.